Charity slams tax havens
Tax havens are costing developing countries at least US$50bn a year - a figure roughly equivalent to the annual aid flowing to developing countries, according to a charity study.
The report, compiled by the charity Oxfam, had been published to coincide with publication of the OECD’s black list of tax havens with the most harmful tax practices.
Blaming the globalisation of capital markets for increasing the scope for offshore activity, Oxfam argues that harmful tax practices provide big business with opportunities to escape their tax obligations, limiting the capacity of countries to raise revenue through taxation, both on their own residents and on foreign-owned capital.
Oxfam’s report also criticises the lack of consultation with poorer countries in the debate on tax avoidance stating that ‘interest has focussed on the concerns of northern governments and the interests of powerful transnational corporations (TNCs)’.